JACKSONVILLE, Alabama – As part of a healthy diet, one often partakes in healthy, scrumptious courses a la poultry, vegetables, dairies, fruits, pastas, grains or fish. Each of these goods provide nutrients that enrich and enhance the body’s muscles, yet growing concern of the latter food group, fish, has been going unnoticed. Research has shown that a form of unwanted substances in oceanic-based food could lead to harmful poisoning.
Since the release of medical reports, fish farms have been queued for their reliability as having safe environmental tactics in the processing of oceanic goods for consumers’ consumption.
The practice of the marine-based activity, or mariculture, came to experimental practice in Norway in the late 1960s, and was then initiated elsewhere to public attention in the 1970s, when concern slowly rose over problematic factors concerning over-fishing and net-catching.
The mariculture technique would only account as a four percent make-up upon its public introduction. Yet, in 2000, the percentage rate would leap to 25 percent, and would eventually go on to multiply three times its rate by 2013 among developing countries.
The increase has since then raised concern from medical analysts who have discovered that fish farming in concentrated areas tends to produce a significant “cloud of nutrient waste” (deriving from leftover feed and aqua fecal matter) that could trigger a threat of algal poisoning.
This comes as a dire situation, as in 2005, it was previously reported that one case of algal bloom in Chinese waters cost a $2.5 million loss in fin-fish.
Moreover, the reputation and safety of fish farms has been under fire for overlooked reports of poisoning in varying fish and salmon markets.
In 1998, fish farms were introduced to Hawaii with a quarter-million dollar plan to revive production of threadfin moi. The yearly plan evoked criticism from medical professionals who voiced strong opposition against the farming units being used in American waters.
In 2014, a geophysics professor of University of Hawaii submitted details to The Department of Land and Natural Resources Office of Conservation and Coastal Lands that questioned the proposed expansion of a fish farming unit (Blue Ocean Mariculture, or BOM) near western Hawaiian waters. The professor noted that the farm’s plans to introduce further carnivorous aqua-creatures in oceanic waters could pose a risk on global fish stocks.
Further outlined, the professor noted that because the creatures feed off of oily substances, the leftover waste could produce wild parasites. The aftermath, then, could make a large effect on struggling nations that depends on fish stock as a vital source of protein.
In contrast, organizers of BOM denounced the professor’s claims and solidified that their alleged oil-based feed is “certified sustainable by the Global Aquaculture Alliance certification systems,” and further argue that the professor’s claims are “unrealistic” and the “free-swimming” parasites allegedly die off quickly.
Support for BOM’s response would oddly usher in praises from Hawaii Fish Company, where the organization’s co-owner expressed praise for the farming unit’s alleged potential enhancement of food security and employment opportunities.
This is, however, not the first time an incident like this has happened.
In 2013, Norway, the earliest nation to experiment with fish farms, was subjected to controversy, when reports detailed a strange brown substance derived from fish feed was found in infected stomachs of salmons.
These findings, yielded by a Norwegian Costal Fishermen’s Association president, went unnoticed when presented to authorities due to allegations of the higher-ups being “economically influenced,” where salmon farms account as 80 percent of Norwegian aquaculture industries.
Suspicion has since then been raised when it was uncovered that fish farm units “tend not to disclose the precise contents” of their fish feed, according to “BarentsObserver.” Additional details note the growing presence of parasitic sea lice and accompanying wild fish have long contributed to the decrease of salmon in varying waters.
Roughly months following the “BarentsObserver” report, “Los Angeles Times” illustrated the odd operations executed by farming units, where it was unearthed that salmon in mariculture typically spend “three years fattening up on feed pellets,” and are then subjected to antibiotic vaccinations to ward off infections, such as sea lice.
In spite of the published findings, neither change nor solutions have been presented.
Optimistically, for people willing to restore the waters and preserve aqua-life, it has been suggested by Lex Bouwman of Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency that “certain aquatic” plants are needed to be grown near fish farms as a viable mean to clear up any poison triggers.
Statistically, by 2050, it has been predicted by medical contributors that the rate of poison triggers like algal blooms and oceanic parasites could multiply six-times the current rate, if a change fails to develop.
Fish farming, an idea that was supposed to end and resolute issues like over-fishing, has now contributed to an even more drastic problem.
– Jeff Varner